Side Doesn't Matter

Eric Shrive also kicks off for West Scranton (Pa.) High, but schools aren't interested in him for his strong leg. The 6-foot-7, 282-pound four-star offensive tackle/defensive tackle already has scholarship offers from Pittsburgh, Rutgers and Syracuse. They all said he could play either position.

Others programs like Notre Dame, Illinois, Georgia Tech and Penn State are showing interest in the top-100 2009 recruit. Those schools as well, all like Eric Shrive on both sides of the ball, though he projects as more of an offensive player on the next level.

I'm not totally set on playing offensive tackle," Shrive said. "I'll play wherever the school needs me."

West Scranton needs him on both sides of the ball. Shrive helped lead the team to a 12-2 record this year before the season ended in the state quarterfinals.

"Eric's a athletic physical offensive tackle for us," head coach Mike Deantona said. "We do a lot of things with him. Obviously at the tackle position we're drive blocking and reach blocking, but we also trap with our tackle. He's athletic enough to be able to do that at the size he's at.

Defensively, Shrive had 73 solos, 61 assists, 11 tackles for loss, 10 sacks, five pass deflects, two fumble recoveries and 21 quarterback hurries.

"He played both strong-side tackle and weak-side tackle for us," Deantona said. "In my opinion, he's a defensive player as well.

"Eric runs very well for his size. He ran a five-flat 40-yard dash last summer, and I'm expecting him to get that down to the 4.9 range."

Shrive, a district champion wrestler as a freshman, has put away his headgear for good to concentrate on football. He reported a bench press of 350 pounds, a squat of 450, and an 87 percent grade average. Notre Dame assistant coach John Latina has been in touch with Deantona regarding Shrive.

"I sent them some film," Deantona said. "They liked his film. He is going to come in and get more game film, and it's an evaluation process with coach Latina, the rest of the coaching staff and coach (Charlie) Weis.

"He did say they would be in either in late December or first thing after the holiday in January. Last I talked to coach was a week to 10 days ago, and the staff was sitting down and putting together their itinerary."

Shrive will put together his spring and summer travel itinerary based on what scholarship offers he has. He went on three unofficial visits this season, checking out Penn State for the Notre Dame game, Pittsburgh for the Cincinnati game, and Syracuse for the loss to West Virginia.

Shrive would be interested in Notre Dame if they offered.

"I get letters from them and my coach has been hearing from them," he said. "Just the great tradition out there. They have had a couple great recruiting classes in the past couple years. They're a very young and up-and-coming team.

"If they offer, I'll probably take an unofficial out there during the spring."

Shrive has kind of learned the recruiting ropes through senior teammate Hubie Graham. The tight end is verbally committed to Illinois.

"Once I saw Hubie starting to get his offers, I knew it wasn't impossible to be a Division-I football player with a lot of hard work," Shrive said. "Hubie used to just tell me to work hard and he took me by the hand showed me how to do it.

"He took me under his wing in the weight room. He showed me what hard work was."

Now that hard work is paying off.

Shrive said that he plans to take his official visits before making a college decision.

"I just want the place I can make the biggest impact and the place where I just fit in with the team," he said.

Regardless of the side of the ball. Top Stories